Instagram's AI System Can Now Detect Offensive Captions
Thu, February 2, 2023

Instagram's AI System Can Now Detect Offensive Captions

Instagram launches new AI tool to address cyberbullying on its platform / Credits: PixieMe via Shutterstock


Social media platforms like Instagram, while a great avenue to communicate with your friends and share your life, has become a place for bullying. A 2017 cyberbullying study ranked Instagram as the worst online platform. Many users leave mean comments under others' posts, and this can be quite painful most of the time. Unfortunately, it isn't easy to teach people about kindness on social media. Thus, social media platforms are trying to stop this in their own ways.

Recently, Instagram announced an AI tool that can detect offensive captions. This is designed to help combat online bullying and give users "a chance to pause and reconsider their words.” According to BBC, a British public service broadcaster, users will receive a prompt if they type an offensive caption on Instagram, informing them if it is similar to others reported for bullying. After that, they will be given an opportunity to edit their caption before it is published.

"In addition to limiting the reach of bullying, this warning helps educate people on what we don't allow on Instagram and when an account may be at risk of breaking our rules," Instagram wrote in the post.

Chris Stokel-Walker, internet culture writer and author of the book YouTubers, stated that this new feature is part of Instagram’s commitment to be more aware of the wellbeing of its users. "From cracking down on promoting images of self-harm, to hiding 'likes' so people outwardly are less likely to equate their self-worth with how many people press 'like' on their photos, the app has been making moves to try and roll back some of the more damaging changes it's had on society," he said.

But, this isn’t the first that Instagram has made a move to prevent cyberbullying in their platform. Earlier this year, it launched a feature that will notify users of their comments on other people's Instagram posts that can be considered offensive. "Results have been promising and we've found that these types of nudges can encourage people to reconsider their words when given a chance," Instagram wrote.